Posted: September 20, 2022

Physiotherapist/Physical TherapistPhysiotherapy

There is convincing evidence that exercise and staying active can significantly enhance the quality of life of those affected by cancer at all stages of the cancer trajectory and may reduce / prevent some cancer treatment toxicities. This course has been designed to enable you to acquire and critically review the evidence and current practice whilst developing the skills to evaluate, risk assess, and provide safe effective and individualised exercise programmes specifically for the cancer population.

This course will enable you to apply specialist knowledge to assess and deliver evidence-based exercise interventions within a cancer care setting. In addition, service provision, links with community programmes, evaluation of exercise interventions as well as behaviour change will be examined

Learning Outcomes:

A successful student will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding:

1. Exercise physiology and principles of exercise prescription.

2. The physiology and pathology of cancer

3. Cancer treatments and management pathways – surgery, radiotherapy, hormone therapy, chemotherapy and targeted biological therapies.

4. Symptom management of the side effects of these cancer treatments and how these can influence the safety and ability to exercise

5. The published evidence that exercise can reduce side effects of cancer treatments, improve morbidity and outcomes after cancer treatments and reduce the risk of recurrence and improve disease free survival

6. Motivational processes, models and techniques involved in behavioural change for the referred patient/client who have suffered the physical and psychological trauma of cancer and its management.

7. How to establish a safe and stimulating activity environment sensitive to the physical and psychological, confidentially needs of patients/clients with cancer including the appropriateness of group or individual therapies

8. How to assess, interpret and record a client’s baseline parameters within the categories of cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, range of motion, balance, body composition based on their physical and psychological parameters related to their cancer but also considering other associated medical conditions such as diabetes, anxiety, depression, hypertension, arthritis, osteoporosis, cardiac disease which may be comorbidities and / or associated with cancer treatments

9. Individual risk stratification using recognised guidelines

10. How to design an individualised exercise programme based on the initial assessment

11. How to determine which baseline parameters can be monitored during the forthcoming exercise program in order to assess ongoing effectiveness and if necessary modify the programme and offer alternative exercises

12. How to prepare and undertake appropriate ongoing screening in order to detect a change in their condition; what to look out for during exercise

Intellectual Qualities

1. Critically reflect upon and examine the different modes of exercise prescription for people affected by cancer

2. Independent and creative thought in application of different models of exercise and support in cancer services and your workplace

3. Exemplify advanced knowledge in the use of quality improvement programmes to evaluate and enhance cancer rehabilitation service delivery

4. Critically analyse the way in which the evolving ethos of prehabilitation and rehabilitation in cancer care is influencing cancer care services

Professional / Practical Skills

1. Synthesise and develop individualised safe and effective exercise sessions and programmes to enhance the quality of life of people affected by cancer.

2. Critically evaluate the different roles and responsibilities within an interdisciplinary team in the management of cancer patients regarding delivery of exercise advice

3. Recognise limitations and barriers to compliance to exercise in individuals with a cancer diagnosis.

4. Understand contra-indications, risk evaluation processes and functional assessments in order to develop individualised exercise programmes based on clinical judgement and advanced reasoning

Registrants are required to have a degree in Physiotherapy

Formative assessments will be conducted informally over the two teaching days using groupwork, polls and discussions.

Summative assessment:

Students will be assessed on all course content by completing a timed MCQ summative test to be conducted at a mutually agreeable time.